The Batt was No. 8 in 2008, No. 5 in 2009, No. 5 this year, "and No. 1 in 2011," said the incoming fall 2010 editor, Matthew Woolbright '12, when I contacted him for reaction.
I've got a Q&A with Woolbright in the works, but for now here are his responses to this honor:
I was thrilled to see that we have maintained our spot in the top 5 college newspapers in the country. I think it says a great deal about the skill, passion and determination of everyone involved with The Battalion. The people I have met working on staff are some of the most incredible people I know, and I am extremely proud to be a part of this team. I will say that my charge all along has been to be the best college newspaper in the country. This is no secret to the staff, and they are ready to show the everyone what we can accomplish together. It truely is an honor to lead such an exceptional group of Aggies, and we are excited about going into the year as the top newspaper in the Big 12.
The Princeton Review ranks newspapers according to student responses to the question, "How popular is your campus newspaper?," so I asked why he thought so many Aggies gave the Batt a thumbs-up:
I believe the students gave such a strong response because we have strived to always be their voice, and center our focus on what matters to them. Our first duty is to our classmates, so I am very happy to see that they think we are doing a good job with our top priority. We want to keep getting better and are looking into ways to incorporate even more students' opinions in how we operate and what we cover. The students of Texas A&M are our top priority and always will be.